Saturday, April 27, 2013

Metaphors are WHERE IT'S AT

I am currently an oxymoron. Perpetually focused on many, many details: co-producing the LTYM show (8 more days!), wrapping up our homeschooling year, setting up an abundance of activities and travel opportunities for this spring and summer, planning a major remodel of our home's first floor, getting used to the idea of a huge (and happy) life change for our family (NOT pregnant and NOT moving), and trying to stay on top of the millions of tiny minutiae that make Life full and thick and lovely....

I'm juggling. There's a reason why that verb is utilized so often to explain how we do what we do. Each activity and person and detail needs immediate attention but there are so very many that you can only grasp each ball for a moment of attention before tossing it back into the mix to make sure that you don't drop the next ball which is rapidly on its way towards the ground.

I learned how to juggle in high school. I was madly in love with a clown* and I went to clown camp with him and his family. (True story). I also learned how to make balloon animals, so if ever you need a distraction at your kid's birthday party? Call me. I can make them all dogs, flowers, and swords.

I digress.

When we learned to juggle, we were given 3 soft handkerchiefs. The handkerchiefs float down slowly and are large enough to grasp easily. You have ample time to plan the toss before the second handkerchief will fall to the ground. And because there are only 3, you can even add in a fancy little arm swooshy thing or head bop or foot tapping. Each toss is given plenty of attention. Each toss is done really well and I rarely missed a catch.

I'll give you a moment to picture what it's like when a room full of teenaged clowns-to-be make the switch from handkerchiefs to rubber balls....

My juggling talents have improved somewhat as I've grown older and accumulated responsibilities like human beings to keep alive and shit. And I actually enjoy juggling 4 or 5 handkerchiefs. It's nice to keep my mind active and eyes open to all that is happening around me. It reminds me to pay attention but is still a slow enough pace that I can look at my surroundings while I'm juggling.

Juggling this year's show into the other mix of everything else I have in my life was a lot less stressful. Partly because I've Been There, Done That and it isn't as scary or foreign this time around; partly because I've allowed the other activities and details in my life to float a little longer before giving them their turn. Surprisingly enough, it all still gets done. Maybe with a little less finesse. Maybe with slightly longer grass in the backyard and dust on my shelves. Definitely with more dirty dishes in my sink and school days done in pajamas... but we're happy.When I find myself stressing about dropping one of the very many balls that seem to be spinning around my head right now, I take a deep breath and try to remember that it's really a handkerchief.

Today is too beautiful to juggle indoors, anyway.

*Yes, there are pictures and No, I don't know where they are.


Marianne said...

So getting back to the you work First Communion parties?

Great post. And today was heaven.

Melisa Wells said...

This is a great post! Will you make me some balloon animals?

Michelle said...

I absolutely adore this post. Too many things juggle and I freak out and shut down. But as soon as I start to make some progress, it's amazing what gets done (you don't want to see the huge pile outside the wee ones' doors right now). I'm SO impressed by your juggling skills - I never progressed beyond the handkerchiefs. But balloon animals? We have a gymnastics party coming up in early June. Are you available? ;)

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